Beta 1

Title What Impact does the Increase in Older Road User Population have on the Traffic System?
Author Hauksdóttir, Soffia
Supervisor Hels, Tove (Traffic safety, Department of Transport, Technical University of Denmark, DTU, DK-2800 Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark)
Siren, Anu Kristiina (Traffic Safety, Department of Transport, Technical University of Denmark, DTU, DK-2800 Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark)
Institution Technical University of Denmark, DTU, DK-2800 Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
Thesis level Master's thesis
Year 2009
Abstract The proportion of people older than 65 has been growing for the latest decades and is expected to grow even more in the near future. In 2050 it is expected that quarter of the people living in the OECD countries will be 65 years or older. The quality and availability of healthcare in the developed world has result in longevity and good health up to higher age. More people have the opportunity to live healthy active live up to high age. Higher population age result in higher driver´s age as well. The proportion of drivers older than 65 years old have been increasing and is expected to increase more in the near future. This report focuses on answering the questions “What Impact does the increase in Older Road user population have on the traffic system?” There is a difference in driving characteristics between age groups. Older people drive differently both because of general changes due to experience and due to health changes like reduction in physical mobility. Older drivers are not a threat to traffic safety as many believe. Older drivers are actually the age groups which have the lowest crash rates. But because of their frailty they have high injury and fatality rates. Older drivers are cautious in general; there driving speed is lower than for average drivers and their accidents usually happens in complex traffic situations, such as at intersections and selfdom because of rashness like speeding or careless overtaking. In this report there is made a traffic simulations of a little network where there are made few scenario changes to present difference in proportion of older drivers, that is with difference in speed distribution, lack of attention and parameters for priority routes. This is to examine difference in travelling time in the network, delay time and queue formulations. The result show that identification of scenarios which present higher proportion of older drivers lead to longer travel time, more delay and longer queues. The results were not in harmony so it is hard to make exact conclusions of the reduced capacity in the network based on them. Further investigations could give better results where a bigger network would be examined and/or simulations for a higher number of random inputs to get more exact results. The increase in older road users should be considered when designing new infrastructure or when upgrading old ones. It is important to have the traffic environment simple as older people are not as good at receiving and dealing with information from number of sources simultaneously as younger ones. Older people start to receive information sequentially instead so the traffic environment has to be designed in a way so the most relevant information’s are the first thing that drivers notice. Finally in the report there is analysing of the same network as used in the simulation researches with respect to older drivers needs in infrastructure design. The overall network is rather simple but there are a few changes that could be made to make it safer. These analyses are made based on aerial photos and from a field trip, more precise analyse could be made based on more information’s like from interviewing road users or from accident statistics from the area.
Imprint Technical University of Denmark (DTU) : Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
Keywords Older Road User, Traffic System
Admin Creation date: 2010-01-06    Update date: 2010-01-06    Source: dtu    ID: 255578    Original MXD